Police spent more than £300,000 on translation services

Marc Jones
Marc Jones

Lincolnshire Police payed out more than £300,000 on interpretation costs in a single year according to new figures.

It follows a Freedom of Information (FOI) request by the Conservative Candidate for Lincolnshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Marc Jones.

The FOI shows that during 2012 and 2013 Lincolnshire Police spent £373,958 for translation services for more than 30 languages.

Languages Included Tagalog, a Filipino language, and Tigrinya which is spoken in the Horn of Africa.

The force now outsources the translation service to private company G4S.

A request by Mr Jones for further information on the costs of the last two years was rejected by Lincolnshire Police.

Marc Jones said: “Nearly a third of a million pounds is a lot of money for Lincolnshire Police to spend on translation especially when there are more pressing needs.

“Add this to the thousands squandered by the current Police and Crime Commissioner’s on the unnecessary removal of our Chief Constable and you see the waste just getting bigger.

“It is a shame that not more energy and resources could not have been devoted to tackling the steep rise in sexual crime and the persistence of rural crime.

“If given the privilege of becoming Lincolnshire’s next Police and Crime Commissioner I will always prioritise the right issues.”

Deputy Chief Constable, Heather Roach, said: “The population of the Lincolnshire Police area has become increasingly diverse over the last few years. It follows that the number of contacts that the force has with residents and visitors who cannot speak English or who have a limited grasp of the language has increased accordingly.

“It is very important that we are able to communicate with victims, witnesses and offenders as well as with people who have problems and concerns that we need to address.

“The cost of translation services is unavoidable as we must provide access to our policing service for everyone in the county.

“We constantly review these costs and seek the best value for money services from different providers. Currently we believe that our arrangements with G4S offer the best solution to our responsibilities in this area.”